It’s fun, isn’t it? You know, to only tell one side of a story. Well, not even actually tell it, really. Just blast away with childish and grotesque remarks and hope no one notices the truth, I guess.
I’ll give you that I’m an easy target for the thin-skinned. I speak my mind and I don’t bite my tongue. I don’t have a problem with that or the aftermath. The problem I have is if you do something shady and I call you out on it, how exactly does that make me a “bitch”? Because you were caught?
I’ve seen OS change in my time here. It went from a place of fervent and adult discussion to something I can’t even wrap my head around. Apparently, if you don’t agree wholeheartedly with something, you better just keep your mouth shut or be called the old stand-by, bitch, when there’s nothing more clever that comes to mind. (And yes, I know it’s supposed to be “cleverer” but that just looks weird.) Oh, or even better be thought of as some part of a “mean girl” posse. Please, you aren’t the first to think that one up and you won’t be the last. It’s a lame attempt at gathering your own posse. It’s stupid. There isn’t one. You're not that special.
Scanner recently posted “Having a Garden Party?” and it was pointed out that he had plagiarized most of it – word for word in some cases. That is why I, Ablonde and Bonnie Russell are skanky, smelly, cootchie, bitches (or some such nonsense). All because we dared to point out with actual facts that he had plagiarized someone else’s work – at least three different sources. This is a writer’s site, is it not? Are we the only ones who respect that? Someone else’s intellectual property? I don’t care if it’s on the back of a tuna can label, it belongs to someone else.
I’m not one to call out people in posts or salacious titles that someone’s grandmother can Google, but I really don’t mind calling out someone for something I take very seriously. I take time to craft a post, a treatment or a script and to further copyright or register them with the WGA. It makes me highly uncomfortable to think that someone else could take the words that I worked hours, weeks or years on and just assign their name to them and am completely baffled that a copyright doesn't mean anything to some people. How exactly can you justify that? But you see, instead of showing a little humility in the situation, scanner chose to somehow defend that he had written some of the post. That is supposed to make it okay, I guess.
On one of the sites he ripped the authors words from, there is a clear copyright notice that states, “Copyright 1996-2010 Creative Loafing Media, Inc. All rights reserved. No material contained in this site may be republished or reposted without express written permission.” Now, if they want you to get written permission ahead of time for even using the material, what do you think they would think about using the material word for word and then attaching your name to it? Like you wrote it?
I’m offended and saddened that something like this would even have to be explained. It’s pathetic, really. At a place where we are supposed to respect each other as writers, the most sinful act put upon us is plagiarism. No one should stand for it - not a single person on here who values the written word, including the editors of Open Salon. I mean, think about if they had chosen that as something to promote on Salon – lawsuit! This isn’t an isolated incident with scanner and there are many others on here that chose to take someone else’s work and make it their own, receiving accolade after accolade for their “brilliant and creative” writing. It is up to each and every one of us who actually care about the craft of writing or what we are putting out there to police behavior like this. There is no room for it. Period.
If this needs to be explained to you or you are confused on how to do research for a piece, then I suggest you learn the basics before you start “publishing”.
It’s theft, plain and simple.